Michael Tusiime, the NFA Managing Director asked the duo to vacate office in a June 19th 2017 letter to pave way for investigations into their alleged misconduct. The duo is accused of abetting illegal logging through connivance with timber dealers from Mukono district.
High Court in Kasindi has dismissed an application for an interim order to restrain Bunyoro-Kitara Kingdom and Hoima Sugar Limited from continuing with activities on a disputed piece of land in Hoima district.
Jimmy Ouna, the Encroachment Prevention Specialist, National Forestry Authority-NFA, says they cant sit back and watch the entire forest cleared even when the parties know that the matter is before court.
Albertine Regional Police Public Relations Officer Julius Hakiza says the arrested individuals are members of a veterans association claiming to have been given part of the forest reserve by President Yoweri Museveni. The veterans have been locked up in a boundary dispute with NFA for over five years.
Ronald Isagara, the Bunyoro Kingdom Deputy Premier and Information Minister, denies claims that the Kingdom has sold the land, adding that they have only partnered with the Sugar Company to use Kingdom land for cane growing. The contested land measures about 8000 hectares. Last month, the National Forestry Authority blocked Hoima Sugar Limited from clearing the disputed land in preparation for cane growing.
The six-kilometer walk, from Nsozi to Kyangwali Sub County headquarters, was aimed at raising community awareness on the need to conserve Bugoma, a protected tropical forest southwest of Hoima district in Bunyoro sub region.
Late last year police and forestry officials evicted veterans of Tulipona Veterans group who had grabbed part of the same forestry reserve and set up temporary houses. The same group has again returned to the forest.